Museum of Art Rhode Island School of Design opens America in View. Landscape Photography 1865 to Now

Museum of Art Rhode Island School of Design presents America in View. Landscape Photography 1865 to Now, an exhibition open September 21, 2012 through January 13, 2013.

Laura McPhee, Smoke from a Wildfire Ignited by Sparks from a Burn Barrel, Champion Creek, Custer County, Idaho, 2005. Gift of the artist and Carroll and Sons (Boston, MA) in honor of Joe Deal.
© Laura McPhee.

A broad panorama of our country’s topographies and correlating narratives, America in View reveals a nation’s ambitions and failings, beauty and loss, politics and personal stories through about 150 photographs spanning nearly 150 years.

Ranging from 19th-century albumen prints documenting the pristine drama of the Western landscape to contemporary digital images that construct newly imagined visions of post-industrial America—the show is drawn primarily from the Museum’s collection. It features objects new to the collection, including major gifts from the late landscape photographer Joe Deal (Provost and Professor, Rhode Island School of Design) and his widow, Betsy Ruppa, as well as gifts from friends and colleagues in Deal’s honor.

The past 20 years reveal a return to romantic views of the landscape, even in its degraded state, often including figures to create narratives. Justine Kurland’s landscape under an overpass shows a stunning place of fantasy and escape. RISD alumnus Justin Kimball explores fantasies of finding wilderness in public parks—where instead we find others seeking the same.

On Wednesday, October 3, at 6:15 pm, Sally Mann, one of the most influential photographers in the world today, shares her evocative images and reads from her forthcoming book.

For more information, call 401 454- 6500 or visit

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